Buying a scooter has become much more enjoyable, thanks to new Honda retail outlets designed by London-based Jump Studios. The concept, unveiled at Honda’s flagship Chiswick campus, succeeds in ridding motorcycle sales of its nacho grease-and-spanners image.
“Traditionally, scooters are sold in motorbike shops, or car and bike dealers in tertiary out-of-town sites,” explains Jump Studios director Simon Jordan. “There is little or no control over the environment.”
The 100sq m Chiswick store, selling both bikes and clothing accessories, is housed in a standalone pavilion. Located in suburban London, the scooter store is ideally placed to attract its target commuter audience. Popularity of scooters has rocketed during recent years, thanks to their cheap running costs, low environmental impact and exemption from the congestion charge. The Chiswick store represents a new direction for scooter retail, with an interior which reflects Honda’s brand image. It aims to attract both men and women, with features such as a transparent glazed frontage and curvy interior elements.
The store is full of witty references to life on the street, with a cash-desk clad in green traffic light lenses, a central display feature resembling a traffic island, and perimeter shelving with cut-outs in the shape of road signs. The central display is illuminated by aluminium lamp stands that echo street lighting, while giant rear-view mirrors mounted on the perimeter walls provide reflected views through the space. A modular window display system features vacuum-formed plastic units which slide along a rail system for flexibility.
Other highlights include ceiling lighting shaped like chevrons, and graphics for windows and walls formed from junction outlines inspired by a popular street atlas. These shapes are combined to create the forms of trees, lamp posts and bollards. The Chiswick store follows an extensive “blue skies” concept exercise by Jump Studios, which examined how Honda’s new “Power of Dreams” communication strategy could influence the design of its scooter retail operations. Jump Studios worked closely with Wieden+Kennedy, the agency behind Honda’s UK image overhaul, in order to reflect the brand values of humanity, playfulness, social awareness and optimism.
The creative platform for all brand activitiy is based on the idea of ‘Warm Engineering’ . Following the opening of the new store, scooter sales at Chiswick Honda are up 500%. The design is now being rolled out around the UK, including an in-store concession in Shoreditch and an outlet on London’s Fulham Road.